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Courtesy of National Post


No. 9: Con­temporary Art and the Envi­ron­ment and The Art Gallery of Ontario partner­ed with the Toronto Dis­trict School Board’s Model Schools for Inner Cities, the Toronto Public Library, and the WWF-Canada to bring con­temporary art and envi­ron­mental education to 10,000 inner city ele­mentary students across the GTA. 

In collab­oration with internationally-rec­ognized Cana­dian artist Iain Baxter&, the Iain Baxter& Ecoartvan hit the streets of Toronto from April 1 through May 31 [2010], and visited 25 of the TDSB’s Model Schools for Inner Cities and eight local libraries. 

No.9’s mis­sion is to introduce a new generation to the power of con­temporary art and its ability to stim­ulate awareness and pos­itive social and envi­ron­mental change. The Iain Baxter& Ecoartvan is a glassed-in cube van running on biodiesel fuel, which displayed a new, No.9-commis­sioned installation by Baxter&, who transformed the cube van into a trav­elling museum fea­tur­ing artwork inspired by the his long-standing inter­est in the envi­ron­ment. 

The Iain Baxter& Ecoartvan was parked in each school’s yard for one or two days, and was accompa­nied by No. 9 educators. No.9’s educators lead hands-on workshops with Grade Four students using a special education package designed in collab­oration with Baxter& and focused around the artist’s concern for ani­mals and their habi­tats. [1]

Iain Baxter& has aimed to expand & challenge the definition of ‘art’ for over 50 years. He currently lives in Windsor (Ontario, Canada) with his wife and  collaborator Louise Chance Baxter&. He is a painter, photographer, sculptor, mixed media artist, installationist, film & video maker, interventionist & performance artist who has been a forerunner of conceptual art in Canada. Baxter& uses his work to undertake cultural commentary & explore art as ‘’visual sensitivity information’’, his phrase for the word art, which points to how his work has always been informed by Marshal McLuhan (influential Canadian philosopher of media theory), so much so that Baxter& has been considered the Marshall McLuhan of Visual Arts in Canada. Continuous themes in his work include information technology, landscape, art as commodity, & environmental & ecological concerns. These prominent themes throughout Baxter&‘s work are often met with wit, parody, satire & word-play.  

Through his art, teaching, and mentorship, Baxter& has widely influenced Canadian art, creating new movements such as the Vancouver School of Photo-conceptualism and blurring the lines between private and public through his N.E. Thing Co. among many other impactful projects.  [2]


[1]       “Iain Baxter& Ecoartvan.” no.9 contemporary art & the environment. Accessed July 19, 2021. http://www.no9.ca/exhibitions/IainBaxter/IainBaxter&.html.

[2]        “IAIN BAXTER.” cacnart. Accessed July 19, 2021. https://www.cacnart.com/-iain-baxter.

Additional information:

“The Amperman.” The National Post, April 19, 2010.

Baxter&, Iain. “&TONDO THOUGHTS.” Amodern, October 30, 2017. https://amodern.net/article/tondo-thoughts/.

“Eco Art Van Connects Art and Ecology.” Toronto.com. Toronto.com, April 6, 2010. https://www.toronto.com/community-story/50290-eco-art-van-connects-art-and-ecology/.

“Iain Baxter&.” Trepanie Baer, n.d. http://www.trepanierbaer.com/artist/iain-baxter/ .

“Iain Baxter& Ecoartvan.” no. 9: Contemporary Art & the Environment, 2010. http://www.no9.ca/exhibitions/IainBaxter/ECOARTVANedguide.pdf.

“MISSION.” no.9 The Culture of Sustainability, October 8, 2020. https://www.no9.ca/mission-2/.

Project Title: Iain Baxter& Ecoartvan
Artists:  Iain Baxter&
Year: 2010

Place: Toronto, Ontario

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